Police & Fire

South Orange Swears In Four New Firefighters

Fire Chief Jeff Markey, standing, introduces four new fighfighters. Seated, from left: Justin Franklin, Timothy Loeser, Kerry Burke and Corey Cucciniello. Credits: Amy Kiste Nyberg

SOUTH ORANGE, NJ – Four firefighters who will go on active duty in November took their oath of office at the Board of Trustees meeting on Monday night.

Joining the Fire Department are Kerry Burke, Corey Cucciniello, Justin Franklin and Timothy Loeser. The four completed their firefighter training, graduating on Sept. 19. According to Fire Chief Jeff Markey, the new firefighters next will complete a five-week EMT training program.

“They will have a rewarding career,” Markey said, introducing each of them to the board. The director of the Essex County Public Safety Academy, Rocco Miscia Jr., added: “I want to congratulate South Orange. They did a wonderful job of recruiting.”

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Two of the recruits, Cucciniello and Franklin, are Columbia High School alumni.

After the swearing-in ceremony, the board turned to other business, approving a contract with Tricon Enterprises for $194,900 for asbestos abatement. The bid was substantially lower than anticipated, and board members questioned village Administrator Barry Lewis Jr. closely about the qualifications of the bidder.

“We were diligent,” Lewis said. Village counsel Stephen Rother said the company was given the opportunity to review its bid. “It was absolutely clear they did not make a mistake,” he said.

The abatement work should begin shortly after the village offices are vacated. Village Hall will relocate to 76 South Orange Ave., and the move will be completed by Oct. 7, Lewis said. Once work begins, the company has 60 days to finish the work.

In other action:

  • Approved a contract with Conres for a voice over internet protocol telephone system and equipment for $31,048.80.
  • Approved a contract with Hatch Mott MacDonald for urban planning and design services for the River Greenway improvements for $239,000. Former Trustee Janine Bauer urged the board to consult with the River Greenway Committee regarding the plans, expressing concern that other projects were added onto what is essentially a plan for developing a bike path. The funds will go toward demolishing the pump house.
  • Extended the deadline for receipt of bids for the Old Stone House to Nov. 13 since the village has received no bids to date.
  • Set Oct. 3 for a special meeting to discuss the operation of the animal shelter by the Jersey Animal Coalition and to discuss ongoing concerns with its water provider, East Orange Water Commission.

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